View Full Version : Whats the purpose of a strop
09-14-2008, 11:45 AM
Whats the purpose of it ??
Im new and Ive read the guide and he doesn't reccomend disposable razors like a shavette, anyway, I understand the hone is to sharpen it I assume, but whats the purpose of a strop ?
09-14-2008, 01:40 PM
Hopefully your question will garner some learned replies; me, I'm only guessing. The stropping helps re-align and polish the edge of the blade which was abused by the stubble it removed during its last shave. While the razor's steel is really hard, somewhere +/- 60 Rockwell (compare that to a file which is approximately 63 Rockwell), the ultra thin edge is quite delicate and is slightly deformed when it runs into one's beard. Hair and skin are actually quite tough and the hair shafts abuse the razor's edge when it cuts through them. Were this not so, the multi blade disposable cartridge razors now in fashion would last for months upon months before replacement was necessary. So the figurative lumpiness and waviness of the straight's edge from the last shave is massaged back into alignment by its passage on the strop and is given an additional slight polish at the same time. All this refines the edge and makes it as ready for the next shave as it was for its previous shave.
Look at the keys on your keyring and notice the polish they have received from the buffing imparted by your fingers: the stropping action is similar.
I gotta say it sounds good...:wink:
09-14-2008, 03:04 PM
It just dresses the edge of the blade and lets leave it at that. A strop (plain leather) is considered a mandatory item in straight shaving not an option.
09-14-2008, 03:29 PM
I don't know what dressing a strop means so I'll try to be more helpful in answering the OP's question. In simplest terms stropping will straighten and re-align the edge of the straight razor which becomes microscopically bent from cutting the beard. Stropping does not remove any metal from the razor. I agree is a required part of str8 shaving.
09-15-2008, 04:17 AM
obviously this is not essential for a straight razor using disposable ones, like the derby straight razor,
how does that compare to a real straight razor
09-15-2008, 10:01 AM
That's why people use shavettes, no stropping, no honing. Seems perfect eh? Well not exactly. Shavettes are very unforgiving and they are not straights. They don't shave like them, don't feel like them but they can give just as good a shave.
09-16-2008, 07:22 AM
Is there much difference between a shavette and the other disposables like the derby ?
09-16-2008, 08:12 AM
The idea is the same in that they all use a disposable blade. Some like the feathers use a dedicated blade for that razor and can be had in fancy scales and some use plain DE blades and have cheap plastic scales. All are very unforgiving but the shave is equal to what you would get from a straight as far as the result goes however they don't feel like a straight when you use them but on the plus side you never have to worry about honing and stropping though you have to buy the blades.
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